The U.K. is at risk of losing 1% of its economy every year by 2045 due to the climate crisis. This is according to the U.K. government’s recent assessment of the risks posed by climate change. In a five-year analysis of the climate risk, officials determined that the U.K. stands to lose even more if actions are not taken to reverse the climate crisis.  

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The assessment found that if global temperatures are allowed to rise above 2 degrees Celsius, more action will be needed for flood defenses, restoration of natural resources such as peatlands, and building a more resilient environment. Other areas that would cost the government include decreased food production and infrastructure destruction from extreme weather events. Flooding alone could cause a loss of at least £1 billion ($1.36 billion) each year by 2050.

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According to Jo Churchill, the minister for climate adaptation, “The scale and severity of the challenge posed by climate change means we cannot tackle it overnight, and although we’ve made good progress in recent years there is clearly much more that we need to do.”

Churchill added that the government will be committing to more significant efforts in dealing with the climate crisis risks to help the country become more resilient. “By recognising the further progress that needs to be made, we’re committing to significantly increasing our efforts and setting a path towards the third national adaptation programme, which will set ambitious and robust policies to make sure we are resilient to climate change into the future,” Churchill said.

Climate campaigners, on the other hand, see the U.K.’s plans as short-sighted, since they only seek to mitigate climate impacts instead of solving the problem itself. Signe Norberg of the Aldersgate Group of businesses supporting sustainability said, “Investing in a healthier natural environment is key to making the UK more resilient to the impacts of climate change and it will be critical that the government puts forward ambitious and credible targets under the Environment Act.”

Via The Guardian

Lead image via Pixabay